Imagine yourself in an elevator with a potentially significant investor. You have about 30 seconds of prime one-on-one time to sell your idea. Think fast, the elevator is not stopping, and time is running out.
Could this be the break you have been waiting for? Well maybe, but only if you have developed and practiced a short and snappy statement to get their attention. This statement is often called an ‘elevator pitch’ and there are many articles on ways to craft an elevator pitch. 1
Such a pitch can be used for promoting your business, a product or service, for asking for monies, and many other kinds of needs. The trick is to develop a pitch ahead of that 30 second elevator ride. But wait, you can do even better if you can create a 20 second pitch... just in case that is all the time you have. It may be very easy to stretch the time a few seconds longer. Reducing the time can be extremely challenging.
There are different forms of elevator pitches and you may want to have more than one in your communication toolbox. The question pitch is one of the easiest to create and use. It can be used verbally and in a written form. To see examples of this, watch television. Many commercials use this pitch routinely by starting the commercial using a question... “is your dishwasher doing a good job?”
The purpose of the pitch is to grab attention and create connects. The first elevator pitch, it is said, occurred around 1852. At that time, elevators were not considered safe enough to transport people (and routinely fell). Elisha Otis invented a locking system that remedied that problem—but no one noticed. So, he organized a demonstration in New York City where he stood in an elevator while an assistant severed the elevator ropes. Fortunately, his safety brake engaged and now Otis products transport 7 billion people every three days! 2
An Elevator pitch may be just the thing to launch your business idea to stardom!